Saturday, April 23, 2011

Binocular Snapshot for 4/23/2011

LastDayWatchers now is the time to take note of the failures as they continue to mount up

Iraq: Two U.S. soldiers killed during an operation south

"Two U.S. soldiers were killed while they were operating in southern Iraq, said Saturday a U.S. military statement.

These deaths bring to 4,450 the number of U.S. military deaths since the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003

Since the end of its combat mission on August 31, the U.S. military focuses primarily on training and advice of Iraqi security forces."

Hundreds of followers of anti-American cleric Moqtada al-Sadr took to the streets of Baghdad on Saturday, trampling U.S. flags and vowing to escalate military resistance

"If U.S. troops fail to leave Iraq this year, it was the second major demonstration by Sadr's followers in recent days after the cleric issued a warning on April 9 he would unleash his Mehdi Army militia if U.S. troops were not out of Iraq by Dec. 31. More than 5,000 marched in the streets of Basra, Iraq's southern oil hub, on Thursday.

"I am ready to fight an American again and I am ready to die for Iraq," Haider al-Bahadili, a 33-year-old Mehdi Army member, said at Saturday's demonstration in western Baghdad's Shula district. "Decisions of Moqtada are orders. We must apply them."

The rally came a day after Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. military's Joint Chiefs of Staff, said during a visit to the capital Iraq's leaders must move quickly if they want U.S. forces to stay beyond year-end."

Iraq PM Pledges Not to Ask for U.S. Troop Extension

"Maliki said that the decision had been taken despite Iraq's desire for stronger military ties with Washington, and alluded to political difficulties he would have in getting approval for any extended American presence.

"We are not going to ask for an extension for U.S. forces, in spite of our keenness to continue cooperation with the United States in all areas, including military,"

He told a South Korean news organization, according to a transcript of an April 20 interview released by his office."

NATO helicopter crash-lands in Afghanistan; 1 crew member killed

"Taliban forces claim responsibility for downing the helicopter in eastern Kapisa province. Forces arriving to rescue the two crew members aboard are fired upon by insurgents.

A NATO helicopter crew member was killed when the aircraft crash-landed in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, authorities said.

The cause of the "hard landing" in Kapisa province was still under investigation late Saturday, said Maj. Michael Johnson, a NATO forces spokesman.

Rescue forces who arrived at the crash scene were shot at by insurgents as they tried to evacuate the helicopter's two crew members, and they returned fire, according to a NATO statement. One of the crew members died at the scene and had not been identified by NATO forces late Saturday.

Taliban officials claimed responsibility for the crash, saying they shot the helicopter down and killed the crew, who they claimed were French.

Insurgents also attacked and killed a NATO service member in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday.

On Saturday, insurgents killed two Afghan police, ambushing their supply convoy in eastern Nangarhar province, which borders Pakistan, according to spokesmen for the Interior Ministry and Nangarhar's governor. Two other police were wounded in the attack, they said.

It was a deadly week for NATO troops. On Friday, a NATO soldier was killed in an insurgent attack in eastern Afghanistan, and the day before, another NATO soldier was killed in the same region by a roadside bomb. NATO forces do not initially disclose the nationality of soldiers killed.

So far this year, 135 NATO forces have been killed in Afghanistan, including 98 U.S. troops, according to This month, there have been 23 U.S. casualties, three more than in April 2010, according to the website. In years past, U.S. casualties have increased during the summer months as the fighting season heated up."

"US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen said in January that he sees an increase in bloodshed in Afghanistan"

As foreign soldiers begin to fire up their offensive against the Taliban elements.

"The violence will be worse in 2011 than it was in 2010 in many parts of Afghanistan," said the senior US military commander."

As the treachery of Israel (lost & found) with their War on Islam will leave them with more "mission creep" just as the May 15th Prophecy have told you

US Carries Out First Drone Strike in Libya: Pentagon

"The United States carried out its first drone strike in Libya on April 23, the Pentagon said, two days after approving the use of pilotless aircraft to aid rebels fighting Moammar Gadhafi's forces.

"The first Predator strike in Libya occurred today in the early afternoon local time (our morning time EDT)," a U.S. military press spokesman said in a statement sent to AFP.

But he said there would be no further information about the target or where the strike occurred. "Per common practice we are not providing any details," the spokesman added.

U.S. President Barack Obama authorized the use of missile-carrying drones in Libya for what his administration called "humanitarian" reasons on April 21.

Rebels, battling to oust veteran leader Gadhafi after four decades in power, have bogged down despite a NATO-led operation launched last month to provide them with air cover and target pro-regime forces on the ground."

Drone attacks will escalate Libya war

"President Obama's authorisation of the use of missile-armed drones is a further escalation of the Libya conflict that is sure to result in yet more civilian casualties (Obama sends in Predator drones to help Misrata, 22 April).

The evidence is overwhelming that drone usage in Pakistan, Afghanistan and elsewhere massively increases "collateral damage".

  •  On 6 May 2002 a drone killed 10 Afghan civilians in a car convoy.

  •  On 5 January 2006 a drone targeting al-Qaida's Ayman al-Zawahiri blew up a house in Pakistan. He wasn't there and eight civilians were killed.

  •  A week later a Predator ordered into action from CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, destroyed three houses in Demadola, Pakistan, killing 22 civilians, including five women and five children.

  •  On 19 May 2009 a drone attacked homes of villagers in North Waziristan thought to be aiding insurgents, killing 14 women and children

  •  On 2 December 2010, Conflict Monitoring Centre in Islamabad issued a report charging that the US was deliberately ignoring Pakistani civilian deaths (2,043 over five years) caused by drones.

* On 23 January 2011, after 13 more civilians were killed, 2,000 tribesmen in North Waziristan held a protest against drone missile strikes.

In May 2010 Philip Alston, UN special representative on extrajudicial executions, highlighted the prevalence of a "PlayStation" mentality among drone operators in the US, in effect playing video games with distant and depersonalised targets.

"I'm particularly concerned that the US asserts an ever-expanding entitlement to target individuals across the globe ... an ill-defined licence to kill without accountability."

Alston, a professor of law at New York University, said"

John McCain, in Libya, calls for more airstrikes and weapons aid for rebels

"Sen. John McCain, on a visit to rebel-controlled eastern Libya on Friday, urged the United States and its allies to increase airstrikes and facilitate weapons deliveries to bolster the insurgent cause

"We [should] take out Kadafi's television station," he said, referring to the government channel broadcasting from Tripoli, the capital

He did urge the United States and other countries to help deliver more arms to the rebels. He cited the precedent of the 1980s war in Afghanistan, when Washington funneled weaponry through Pakistan to Islamist rebels fighting a Soviet-backed regime.

"Same thing we did in Afghanistan when they were fighting against the Russians," McCain said. "Weapons delivery can be facilitated."

McCain called on Washington to join a handful of nations, including France and Italy, that have recognized the rebel council in Benghazi as Libya's legitimate government. "All of them have long records of opposition to Kadafi," McCain said of the council members."

"They are my heroes,"

McCain said of the rebels as he walked out of a local hotel in Benghazi"

Libya and the Tragedy of Incremental Decision-Making

"This has been more a matter of emotion than of clear-eyed consideration of costs and benefits. It is the sort of redemptive, analogy-laden “never again” attitude that also has been in evidence in other decisions about war and peace, similar to the repeated invocations of Munich and the pre-World War II diplomacy that have contributed to earlier wars.

Other pathologies are associated with the piecemeal nature of the Libyan intervention, which already has gone from no-fly zones to offensive strikes on government forces to allied advisers on the ground and now to U.S. missile-armed drones in the air."

Therefore "Watch" and you will see the Syrian Prophecy come to pass with 100% accuracy, to the detriment of Israel

Syria: Is Assad's Clan Turning Against Him?

"Despite the end of the 48-year state of emergency, signed this week by President Bashar al-Assad, protests were continuing Friday. It is just one more outward sign of the sinking faith in the regime's durability

Since February, there have been several contradictory statements and rumors of rivalry within the Assad clan, which have revived the idea that the regime is facing internal struggles.

"These divisions are real," says a Syrian businessman who has met Assad several times. "The President and his wife Asma are reformers but they don't make all the decisions"

Israel in a quandary over turmoil in Syria

"In a recent interview, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was asked bluntly whether it was in his country’s interest to see the downfall of the government of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, now rocked by protests.

“Any answer I’ll give you wouldn’t be a good one,” Netanyahu replied cautiously, in remarks broadcast exclusively on YouTube by Israel’s Channel 2 television. 

“We’d like to see everywhere, including in Syria, genuine reforms for democracy, genuine emergence of democracy. That’s no threat to any of us.”

The vague response belied the close attention Israel is paying to the unrest across Syria and the concerns raised by officials and experts here about what the possible outcomes could mean for relations between the two countries."

Just as the May 15th Prophecy have written it down written with 100% accuracy at LastDayWatchers

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Congress: Missing in Action

"Dennis Hastert, who was Speaker during most of George W. Bush's presidency, thought of himself primarily as the President's floor leader, essentially a member of the White House staff.

Nancy Pelosi, who succeeded Hastert when Democrats took control of the House, thought of herself primarily as the leader of the Democratic Party -- her job, she said, was to elect more Democrats -- until Barack Obama was elected President; then, with Obama having assumed the role of the party's most prominent spokesman, she saw herself as the legislative leader of the party and champion of its partisan agenda.

John Boehner, less grandly, sees it as his principal job to make the House work more openly and more efficiently.

Not one of the three has understood the constitutional responsibilities of the Congress -- the key to the American system of self-government -- or their obligation to ensure that those important obligations are met by the institution they lead.

The President may deny that it is a "war" but Americans have been firing weapons at Libyan soldiers and at civilians who support the Gaddafi regime. Armed drones have been sent to fire on Libyans.

The President may play semantic games but, we're at war in Libya and we are there without the constitutionally-required authorization by Congress.